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VoteCast: Washington voters say nation headed wrong way

November 7, 2018

A majority of voters casting midterm election ballots in Washington said the country is headed in the wrong direction, according to a wide-ranging survey of the American electorate.

As voters cast ballots for U.S. Senate and members of Congress in Tuesday’s elections, AP VoteCast found that 34 percent of Washington voters said the country is on the right track, compared with 65 percent who said the country is headed in the wrong direction.

Here’s a snapshot of who voted and why in Washington, based on preliminary results from AP VoteCast, an innovative nationwide survey of about 139,000 voters and nonvoters _ including 4,418 voters and 462 nonvoters in the state of Washington _ conducted for The Associated Press by NORC at the University of Chicago.

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TOP ISSUE: HEALTH CARE

Health care was at the forefront of voters’ minds: 26 percent named it as the most important issue facing the nation in this year’s midterm elections. Others considered immigration (19 percent), the economy (17 percent), the environment (12 percent) and foreign policy (7 percent) to be the top issue.

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STATE OF THE ECONOMY

Voters have a positive view of the nation’s current economic outlook _ 62 percent said the nation’s economy is good, compared with 37 percent who said it’s not good.

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TRUMP FACTOR

For 37 percent of Washington voters, President Donald Trump was not a factor they considered while casting their vote. By comparison, 63 percent said Trump was a reason for their vote.

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CONTROL OF CONGRESS

Tuesday’s elections will determine control of Congress in the final two years of Trump’s first term in office, and 67 percent of Washington voters said which party will hold control was very important as they considered their vote. Another 22 percent said it was somewhat important.

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AP VoteCast is a survey of the American electorate in all 50 states conducted by NORC at the University of Chicago for The Associated Press and Fox News. The survey of 4,418 voters and 462 nonvoters in Washington was conducted Oct. 29 to Nov. 6, concluding as polls close on Election Day. It combines interviews in English or Spanish with a random sample of registered voters drawn from state voter files and self-identified registered voters selected from opt-in online panels. Participants in the probability-based portion of the survey were contacted by phone and mail, and had the opportunity to take the survey by phone or online. The margin of sampling error for voters is estimated to be plus or minus 1.9 percentage points. All surveys are subject to multiple sources of error, including from sampling, question wording and order, and nonresponse. Find more details about AP VoteCast’s methodology at http://www.ap.org/votecast.

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AP created this story automatically using data from NORC.

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For AP’s complete coverage of the U.S. midterm elections: http://apne.ws/APPolitics

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